PartnerOn Journal

Is Social Distancing the Channel’s Digital Marketing Tipping Point?

The transition to remote everything creates a new normal, opening doors to growth-spawning marketing and sales opportunities.

As measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) force office closures and the cancellation of channel events, business travel and face-to-face meetings, many look forward to the day when life gets back to normal. But what if that day never comes?

Transitions tend to morph into new normals that when embraced, open doors to new opportunities and viewpoints. 

Before ‘the C word’ dominated every conversation and news update, the cloud was pushing B2B decision makers into online buyers’ journeys. Forward-looking tech vendors and service providers have fallen in step by adapting revenue models, and meeting buyers where they are with digital marketing. 

Social distancing could be the tipping point for the rest of the channel as service providers discover what they can accomplish online with the right customer-centric resources, marketing tools and engagement practices. 

With the coronavirus changing work as we know it, it’s time to dive in. Gartner research from 2019 shows that B2B buyers considering a purchase spend 27% of that time researching independently and just 17% meeting with potential suppliers. That number dips to 5% or 6% when comparing multiple suppliers. The influence of Millennial workers on B2B purchasing is also shifting the sales cycle online. 

Fortunately, digital marketing solutions offered by vendors including Microsoft, SYNNEX and Arrow can give service providers a running start. They remove the complexity of choosing and deploying a platform, creating quality content, organizing content into relevant campaigns, and delivering it to the right customers through the right digital communication channels. 

Spend some time with PartnerOn Journal, and you’ll find plenty of examples showing how channel service providers drive results with digital marketing. These include Microsoft Gold Partner, Infused Innovations; and Ingram Micro channel partners Treasure Valley Solutions, Micro Solutions & Network Center. Consider the experiences of other channel service providers using the PartnerOn platform and winning big time with 79% reporting a 20% increase in social conversations and 100% seeing a 20% increase in inbound leads including sales calls.

Achieving these types of gains takes a change in mindset and habit, but it pays off. And while we don’t know exactly what a post coronavirus channel will look like, signs point to a bright future for vendors and service providers prepared to embrace digital marketing.

Karen Dasey